EDMONTON—The Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) is filing formal policy grievances against employers, including Alberta Health Services (AHS), that are refusing to acknowledge the newly created National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
The federal government introduced this statutory holiday, to be observed on September 30, earlier this year. Many employers with AUPE members have collective agreements which compel the employers to acknowledge holidays created by the federal government, but some are not honouring the new holiday.
“You come to expect this from employers, especially ones like AHS, who like to blame so many of their systemic problems on staff taking days off,” says AUPE Vice-President and Chair of the union’s Human Rights Committee, Bobby-Joe Borodey.
“But to stick their noses up at the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is a new level of heartless disrespect,” she says. “How dare they refuse to acknowledge a day to reflect on such a serious issue.”
Employers that are refusing to acknowledge the holiday include AHS, Covenant Health, Points West Living, and the Alberta Gaming, Liquor & Cannabis commission (AGLC).
“In a year where thousands of unmarked graves have been found at so-called residential schools, you would think anyone with a heart would rush to acknowledge this new holiday and give their staff the well-earned time off for rest and reflection,” says Borodey.
The Alberta Treasury Branch (ATB) is one of the few employers to recognize the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation as a holiday for staff. Curiously, the Government of Aberta is still considering whether it will do so at the time of this press release.
Vice-President Borodey is available for interviews.
Please contact Alexander Delorme, AUPE Communications Officer: 780-264-9274 or firstname.lastname@example.org